A lazy Sunday turned into a chaotic matinee in Providence this afternoon, as the Friars avoided disaster against Stony Brook with a 62-60 win. Surviving a game like this is mightily important for a team that’s been struggling with injuries over the last few weeks.
It didn’t feel like the Friars would be able to pull this one out, but they found a way, and a win’s a win.
Providence came out of the gates efficiently, starting 5-9 from the field. The second unit came in and struggled to find any sort rhythm, but Cooley quickly inserted Kyron Cartwright back into the lineup. Turnovers and miscues led Providence to go scoreless for close to 6 minutes, which in turn resulted in a 13-0 Stony Brook run.
Watson helped to get the Friars out of their funk with back to back three point plays, but Providence still couldn’t seem to break through, as Akwasi Yeboah went 5-6 from the field for 13 points.
Stony Brook led 31-29 at the break.
The Friars took the lead early in the second frame before a slew of Stony Brook buckets pushed the Seawolves back out in front.
Kyron Cartwright missed a three pointer a few minutes into the half and came down on his defenders foot. He remained on the ground for a minute or so holding his right ankle and would eventually head to the locker room after staying on the bench with trainer John Rock.
The Friars then had 15 minutes to avoid another nonconference loss, so naturally they went on a ten minute scoring drought that included multiple turnovers and a ton of sloppy play. Ed Cooley made the interesting move to run Rodney Bullock at the five while keeping Watson on the bench, even to the point where he inserted Tom Planek into the lineup over the freshman big man. It was clear that Cooley was trying to force tempo with this five.
Planek came into the game to ignite some energy, and did just that. The Friars were energized on defense and went on an 8-0 run in less than 90 seconds. They extended that to a 12-0 run to battle back into this one. Planek was a +10 in his first three minutes. Cooley would go offense/defense with Watson and Planek for the remainder of the game, which turned out to be an effective move.
Stony Brook tied the game at 60 with just under 10 seconds remaining. Providence would miss two attempts at the rim, before getting a foul call with .6 left. Rodney Bullock would convert on both attempts, and the Friars would escape with the win.
- Nate Watson had 15 points in his first career start. He looked confident and comfortable underneath.
- Kyron Cartwright returned to the Friars bench on crutches towards the end of the second half. Not a great sign for Cooley and his staff.
- Tom Planek’s five minutes of play gave Providence the boost they needed. Without White, Diallo, or Cartwright, he becomes extremely valuable off the bench.
PC heads to Mohegan Sun on Wednesday to face off against Houston.